BKU rejects deal on sugarcane prices

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Muzaffarnagar, December 3:  BKU activists on Monday rejected the compromise reached between private sugar mill owners and the Uttar Pradesh government and said their agitation would continue till farmers get their dues.

“Bhartiya Kisan Union’s agitation would continue till proper dues are provided to the farmers,” BKU president Naresh Tikait told reporters. “The compromise between sugar mill owners and the state government is not acceptable,” he said, threatening to hold a road blockade to press for their demands.

Meanwhile, the dharna outside the District Magistrate’s office in Muzaffarnagar by BKU activists entered the sixth day.

Ending a week-long impasse over cane prices, private sugar mill owners in Uttar Pradesh on Sunday agreed to start crushing at the rate of Rs 280 per quintal, but maintained that the current pricing is “unviable“.

“Sugar industry of Uttar Pradesh, at the initiative of the Chief Minister and in the larger interest of lakhs of farmers, announced commencement of crushing operation for session 2013-14, despite operations being unviable at the present cane pricing,” UP Sugar Mills Association Secretary Deepak Guptara said in a statement.

Announcing tax breaks to end the impasse in the sugar industry, Uttar Pradesh government had on November 28 warned sugar mills of legal action if they did not start operations by next week.

State Chief Secretary Javed Usmani had said that setting aside their demand of not paying more than Rs 225 per quintal, sugar mills have agreed on the State Advisory Price of Rs 280 per quintal and have promised to start crushing from December 2.

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